John is feeling inspired, so he writes down some chords and lyrics for a new song. Which type of copyright protects his work?

(A) Sound recording

(B) Musical composition

(C) Music video

(D) None of the above. Copyright law only protects his song once it’s uploaded to YouTube.


Since John has created a new and original song which is his own composition, his work is protected by the Musical Composition copyright.

When someone writes a song, they create a musical composition, which is a copyrighted work. Creating a new performance of the composition requires permission from all of the copyright holders of the composition.

  • Created by: Songwriters, producers, and composers
  • Owned/controlled by: Publishers
  • Can be administered by: Collection societies, third-party rights administrators and service providers. (“Administration” means the collection and distribution of revenue to the composition rightsholders.)
  • Example: “Coming Back to Life” written by Pink Floyd


This question is a part of the YouTube Music Rights Management Certification Exam. You can get answers to all the questions asked in this exam on our YouTube Music Rights Management Certification Assessment Answers page.

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